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Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety in Teens

Hands of someone thinking about anxiety in teens

Anxiety is an unavoidable part of the human experience. Everyone experiences fear, doubt, and uncertainty to some degree, and teens are no exception. However, when anxiety takes hold and does not seem to fade with time, that could signify the presence of a mental health disorder. It can often be challenging to notice the signs of anxiety in teens because they are adept at hiding their feelings. Determining when everyday stress crosses over into anxiety symptoms in teens is crucial so that you can get your teen the help they need. Luckily, there are a variety of effective treatment programs for anxiety.

If your teen struggles and cannot seem to shake their worries and fears, then it may be time to consider professional therapy. At Imagine Fort Collins, our staff provides integrated treatment for mental health disorders in teens, using a variety of evidence-based therapies. Our outpatient center supports patients and their families through treatment and recovery. We can help your teen get through this period of life full of physical, mental, and emotional changes. Contact Imagine Fort Collins today by calling 888.291.2309. Someone from our team would be more than happy to walk you through the treatment options for your teen.

What Causes Teen Anxiety?

Usual fears and worries can be worsened by the many changes that teens undergo as they grow older. The frustration they feel at not having the tools to cope, combined with a host of new experiences during puberty, can make teens more likely to feel anxious. Some of the common causes of teen anxiety can include:

  • Being expected to excel in school
  • Peer pressure
  • Alcohol and drug use
  • Physical changes of adolescence
  • Social media
  • Grief and loss

There can be many reasons teens have anxiety, as each person is unique and will have different things that cause them stress.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety in Teens?

While the internal symptoms of anxiety are often hidden from others, behavioral symptoms are easier to spot. Some of the common outward anxiety symptoms in teens can include:

  • Shying away from social interaction
  • Negative self-talk
  • Poor performance in school
  • Fluctuations in weight
  • Insomnia or disordered sleeping habits
  • Drug and alcohol use
  • Lack of interest in activities they used to enjoy

These symptoms may present themselves in greater and lesser degrees, even in teens who do not suffer from anxiety. However, if you notice a combination of a number of these symptoms in your teen, there is a higher likelihood of them experiencing anxiety. It can be difficult to conclusively tell that a teen is feeling pressure or struggling with an anxiety disorder, especially since many teens hide their symptoms because they are afraid of being judged. The most crucial part of noticing when your teen has anxiety is maintaining ongoing and open communication, so they are not scared to tell you how they feel.

When Should You Consider Teen Anxiety Therapy Options?

Anxiety disorders rarely get better on their own. A teen experiencing signs and symptoms of anxiety that disrupt their day-to-day living should consider therapy immediately. Mental health conditions, such as anxiety disorders, worsen the longer they are left untreated.

One of the top treatment options for anxiety is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). This treatment modality encourages patients to evaluate their negative thoughts about themselves, the world, and their future. This treatment is effective in helping adolescents overcome a variety of mental health and addiction issues, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

CBT also effectively treats dual diagnosis cases involving a co-occurring substance use disorder.

Start Therapy for Anxiety in Teens at Imagine Fort Collins

Our mental health professionals at Imagine Fort Collins are ready to provide the professional support needed to help your teen heal and recover from anxiety. Our team can help guide you and your child toward a happier, healthier adolescent life. There is no reason to delay getting treatment, as mental health disorders are best treated with the help of a professional. Contact us at 888.291.2309 to learn more about how we can help.